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Arizona House Committee OKs Human Trafficking Bill

Published: Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 2:29pm

A state House committee on Thursday unanimously OK’d a bill targeting pimps who traffic minors for sex. The bill would also stiffen penalties for trafficking adults and would target businesses like escort services that advertise on websites. The proposal is being championed by Cindy McCain and Gov. Jan Brewer.

The measure would require advertisers to have written permission of any women they depict and evidence that they are not minors.

McCain said the measure would put Arizona at the forefront of the fight against human trafficking by imposing harsh penalties for pimps and taking a step toward holding websites accountable that advertise girls and women for sex. McCain has been advocating for human trafficking legislation not only in Arizona but in other states, especially ones that host major events like the Super Bowl that attract traveling pimps and prostitutes.  

House Bill 2454 increases the minimum prison term for a child prostitution conviction and makes pimping a child or adult a racketeering offense that would allow asset seizures. Thursday’s vote in the House Judiciary Committee sends the bill to the full House for debate.